Abby Powell
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Abby Powell

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About Abby Powell

Abby Powell is a native of Northeastern Massachusetts who splits her time between commuting into Boston for work and caring for and riding her rescue Mustang x Arab mare, Maggie.

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Saturday Links from Tipperary

Groton House Farm dressage warmup gang was ready for action! Photo courtesy of Kristie Gill.

I played hooky from work yesterday (though I’m not sure I can technically call it hooky when I actually used a vacation day) to volunteer on dressage day at my local event, Groton House Farm. I’d call dressage day at GHF a five-ring circus, but I don’t think circus is really the right word. While yes, with five rings running at once there was a LOT going on, but the GHF organizers and coordinators have created a well-oiled machine and it was easy for a warmup steward newbie such as myself to step in and successfully contribute.

Oh, and bonus: my day of volunteering earned some points for my Area 1 Virtual Team Challenge team and I got to meet one of my teammates!

U.S. Weekend Action:

Groton House Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Surefire H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Essex H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Stable View Summer H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Fox River Valley Pony Club H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Shepherd Ranch SYVPC H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Inavale Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Arrowhead H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Midsouth Pony Club H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Honey Run H.T. [Website] [Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

Eventer Hillary Moses Recovering From Rotational Fall

Dr. Laura Werner: How to Manage Your Horse Before, During & After Intensive Competition

Charlotte Dujardin to appear in children’s TV show

PODCAST: Which Event Will be Home to the Next U.S. Four-Star?

Eventer who broke both arms to take on 24-hour ride

The Healthy-Backed Horse

Saturday Video:

Sydney Conley Elliott’s mount, Cisko A, with whom she made her four-star debut at Rolex in 2016, has been on the mend from a tendon injury sustained last September. This neat video talks abut how kinesio tape therapy is helping him in his recovery:

What’s Happening This Weekend: Names to Watch Across the Country

Courses are prepped and ready to go for the weekend! Photo via Midsouth Pony Club Horse Trials on Facebook.

This weekend offers some respite from the FEI calendar, but that doesn’t make it any less busy for U.S. eventing. There’s plenty happening at the National levels, and with a number of horse trials around the country offering Intermediate and Intermediate/Preliminary divisions, it’s a fun opportunity to be on the lookout for some up-and-coming riders and horses. Here are a few to watch out for around the country.

Maya Black and Mowgli at Galway Downs. Photo by Sherry Stewart.

Inavale Farm HT – Philomath, OR (Area VII) – Intermediate

The only USEA event in the state of Oregon, Inavale Farm celebrates its 20th year this weekend with divisions running from Intro to Intermediate. Having spent the spring running Preliminary, Maya Black’s Mowgli will be stepping up to the Intermediate level for the first time. Mowgli’s biggest test thus far has been the Galway Downs CCI* last fall, where the pair placed second.

Another familiar name in the Intermediate division is John Camlin, resident owner and trainer at Caber Farm in Onalaska, Washington, which is also home to an Area VIII USEA horse trials. Having ridden up to the CCI2* level over 10 years ago, this will be John’s first start at Intermediate again in a number of years. He’ll be riding Armed Services, a horse who stepped up to the Preliminary level in 2015.

Cornelia Dorr and Louis M at Jersey Fresh. Photo by Shelby Allen.

Groton House Farm H.T. – Hamilton, MA (Area I) – Intermediate/Preliminary

This destination event in the heart of Area I is celebrating its 40th anniversary, kicking off with dressage today as they continue the tradition of running a three-day event. This will be something of homecoming for two Area I natives, Jeanie Clarke and Cornelia Dorr, who are both contesting the I/P division along with nine other strong competitors.

Jeanie grew up riding Groton, Massachusetts (about an hour away from Groton House Farm — don’t let the names confuse you!) and moved to Florida permanently in 2012. Jeanie hasn’t competed in Area I since 2013, but she’s making the trek up north with Head for More. Cornelia grew up riding in Hamilton and is bringing her new mount, the legendary Louis M, to Groton House for the first time.

Anna Loschiavo and Prince Renan have returned again this year to defend their title as last year’s I/P winners. Anna is riding two horses in the division this year, the other being Fernhill Swatch, who has had an excellent spring with Anna as well, placing in the top three of their last three events.

Waylon Roberts and Bill Owen at the Pan Am Games. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Fox River Valley Pony Club Horse Trials – Barrington, IL (Area IV) –Intermediate/Preliminary

Fox River is hosting the smallest I/P division with four entries this weekend, and among the entrants are Elizabeth Scheltema and Bill Owen. Bill Owen is a former ride of Waylon Roberts, who competed the horse on the Canadian team that won bronze at the 2015 Pan American Games. Now Bill Owen is showing his new rider the ropes, taking her up to Preliminary last spring and now testing the waters of the upper levels this weekend.

Melanie Rousseau and Sullivan should give them a run for their money; this pair finished in the top 10 in the CIC2* at Fair Hill this April.

Alex Baugh and Ballingowan Pizazz at NAJYRC in 2016. Photo by JJ Sillman.

Midsouth Pony Club H.T. – Lexington, KY (Area VIII) – Intermediate/Preliminary

Thirteen competitors will be leaving the startbox to gallop through the bluegrass and contest this division, of which two riders have previously tackled four-star fences over the same grounds.

Sydney Conley Elliott has spent the past year getting to know Carol Stephens’ QC Diamantaire, and the pair have achieved good results at the Prelim level and at Intermediate, which they stepped up to at Rocking Horse earlier it the year. Consistently scoring in the low 30s at the National level and with very few jump penalties on their record, they’ll be a pair to watch in the future.

The second four-star rider in this division is Allie Knowles, who will be piloting Katherine O’Brien’s Ramsey as she continues to make her comeback from injuries sustained in a fall at Red Hills in March. This pair is the most experienced pair of the bunch, as Allie acquired the ride on Ramsey over the winter from Emily Hamel, who competed the horse to the CCI3* level.

Also in the mix are Alexandra Baugh and Ballingowan Pizazz, who won this division last year, placed fourth overall in the 2016 NAJYRC CH-J*, and also already have two Intermediate wins this year.

Phillip Dutton and I’m Sew Ready at Rolex Kentucky. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

Surefire H.T. – Purcellville, VA (Area II) – Intermediate

The Intermediate division at Surefire Horse Trials is easily the most competitive this weekend with 30 entrants, many of whom are professional riders. While there are too many to note, a few stick out. Phillip Dutton has two rides in this division, Fernhill Singapore and I’m Sew Ready, who is returning to competition after a 10th-place finish at Kentucky CCI4* earlier this year.

Boyd Martin has three rides in the division: Barry, Contessa and Polaris. This will be Polaris’ first competitive run with Boyd in the irons, having been competed to the CCI3* level by Sara Moore.

Morgan Rowsell leads guests on a walk of brand new course at Moorland Farm. Photo via Essex Horse Trials on Facebook.

Also of note this weekend is the return of the Essex Horse Trials, which is being revived after a nearly 20-year hiatus. The new event will take place at Moorland Farms in Far Hills, New Jersey, and a number of well-known riders will be competing. Stay tuned for more coverage from Essex.

No matter where you are in the country, there are plenty of reasons to go eventing this weekend! Check today’s News & Notes post for all the links to entries, ride times and results at every USEA horse trials running throughout the country.

#FantasyFarmThursday: Boyd Martin’s Former Aiken Training Base on the Market

Photo courtesy of bridlecreekfarm.com

You may be familiar with our sister site Horse Nation’s #FantasyFarmThursday, and this week we’re bringing you a very special EN Fantasy Farm right here in the form of Bridle Creek Farm in Aiken, SC.

Bridle Creek Farm was established in 2008 and was designed with the active equestrian competitor in mind. The 44.7 acre facility boasts a gorgeous nine-stall main barn along with two other shed row barns for a total of 14 stalls on the property in addition to ample turnout. For human living space, the main house is divided into a 2,200 square-foot owner’s apartment and an 800 square-foot guest apartment, which could be used for a resident trainer.

Photo courtesy of bridlecreekfarm.com

What will truly catch an eventer’s eye, however, is the riding space. With both a dedicated jump ring and a dedicated dressage arena (with mirrors!) you’ll never have to worry about making sure your grid doesn’t encroach on someone else’s 20 meter circle again.

The real crown jewel of this property may well be its very own cross country course designed by the one-and-only Eric Bull in collaboration with Boyd Martin. The 10-acre irrigated field offers beautifully constructed fences with questions for all levels of training. And just when you think you’ve seen everything the property has to offer, you’ll find that it backs up to miles of trails for hacking as well as a community gallop lane.

Photo courtesy of bridlecreekfarm.com

Bridle Creek Farm was the winter base for Boyd’s operation for several years and has since been home to other notable riders including Lillian Heard, Caitlin Silliman and Megan Perry. Many more familiar names of the eventing community have trained out of the facility as it has hosted Developing Rider and High Performance training sessions in past years.

Photo courtesy of bridlecreekfarm.com

Is this your dream farm? Click here to learn more.

Saturday Links from Tipperary

A summer evening well spent. Photo via @bri.eventing on Instagram

Well I was probably a little overdue to take a digger, frankly. I don’t actually remember when the last time I fell off was, but I forgot how stiff I’d be the next day. No worries though, I am otherwise no worse for the wear and at least I gave my trainer a good laugh! I gave my pony a little pop with the crop as we were going over a little 2’3″ barrel and I’m not sure if I surprised her or offended her, but she blasted off over that jump and launched me right over her neck. Can’t say the pony doesn’t have some springs!

Luhmühlen Links: WebsiteEntriesScheduleXC Starting OrderLive ScoresFEI TVEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Action:

Feather Creek Farm HT: [Website] [Ride Times & Live Scores]

Golden Spike HT: [Website] [Ride Times & Live Scores]

Come Again Farm Fathers Day HT: [Website] [Ride Times & Live Scores]

Bucks County Park HT: [Website] [Ride Times & Live Scores]

Silverwood Farm Spring HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

Seneca Valley Pony Club Spring HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Full Gallop Farm June HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

Great Vista HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

War Horse Event Series June HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

Angela Bowles: Let’s All Work As A Team To Make Our Sport Of Eventing Better

Announcing 2017 USEA Young Event Horse Championships Details

William Micklem: Unshrouding Misunderstood Dressage Terms (H&H VIP and worth the subscription!)

Riders react to Mike Etherington-Smith’s first Luhmühlen cross-country course: ‘Not the most testing, but you can still trip up’

An Open Letter to My Horse Dad

Addressing Unwanted Behavior in Performance Mares

Heat Advisory for Horses

Saturday Video:

Holy. Cuteness.

#crosscountrymachines #BarbieandLuciaTakeSpringRun ❤️#eventingnation #horsenation #ponypower

A post shared by Amanda Conti (@mbhorsejumper) on

Saturday Links from Tipperary

Paige Beliveau riding Pippen McGee, winners of the Novice Rider B division at GMHA Spring H.T. last weekend. Photo by Joan Davis/FlatlandsFoto

This is the first time since I’ve been doing Saturday Links posts that I’m competing in one of the events that are listed below! I’m stoked to be getting out to my first recognized event of the season at Valinor Farm down in Plymouth, Mass and I can’t wait to go eventing.

In case you missed it, the big news from yesterday is that the International Olympic Committee confirmed to the FEI that equestrian sports, including eventing, will be remain in the Games for 2024. Both the 2020 and 2024 events will follow the new format which includes teams of three riders and no drop score. Check out the links below for the press release.

Bromont Links: Website, Entries, Ride Times, Live Scores, EN’s Coverage, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

Bramham Links: Website, Entries & Live Scores, XC Live StreamEN’s Coverage

U.S. Weekend Action:

Larkin Hill H.T. [Website] [Ride Times]

Valinor Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Plantation Field June H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

The Middleburg H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Results]

River Glen H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Roebke’s Run CCI/CIC & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Queeny Park H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Copper Meadows H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Camelot Equestrian Horse Park H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Aspen Farms H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Derbyshire Farms H.T. [Website/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

FEI President Welcomes IOC Confirmation of Equestrian Sport in 2024 Olympics

Would you be up for taking on Bramham’s CCI3* cross-country course? Here’s what’s in store

2017 Belmont Stakes Need-to-Know Guide

How Horse Genetics Relate to Equestrian Disciplines

A Day in the Life: On XC in Kentucky with Four-Star First-Timer Savannah Fulton

Show-Jumping Warm-Up Strategies That Work

Hot on Jumper Nation: The Sad and Bizarre Defense by Kelley Farmer and Larry Glefke

Saturday Video:

This is one of the simplest and best braiding tutorials I’ve seen yet. I usually brain with yarn, but I think I’ll give these a whirl later this season:


Saturday Links from Tipperary

Rachel and Twist are accepted! Photo via Rachel Dowess on Instragram: @rdeventing

While some of the best in the world are competing across the pond this weekend — and I’m certainly enjoying following along with those events — I’ve been especially delighting in all the jog photos popping up on social media from the Indiana Eventing Association Training and Novice Three-Day Event.

How fun and awesome is it for the lower-levels to get to enjoy the preparation and prestige of a trot-up? I particularly love this picture of Novice three-day competitors 15-year-old Rachel Dowless and her 14hh Hackney/Shetland, A Little Twist. The pony may be of small stature, but his rider has a huge smile!

If you’re looking to catch some live stream action this morning, you can cheer our North American contingent competing at Tattersalls on from afar. Here are their ride times:

Phillip Dutton and Fernhill Revelation: 3:30 p.m./10:30 a.m. EST
Buck Davidson and Carlevo: 3:39 p.m./10:39 a.m. EST
Kathryn Robinson and Let It Bee: 4:12 p.m./11 a.m. EST
Kim Severson and Cooley Cross Border: 4:24 p.m./11:24 a.m. EST
Katherine Coleman and Back to Business: 4:39 p.m./11:39 a.m. EST
Phillip Dutton and Z: 4:57 p.m. EST/11:57 a.m. EST

Tattersalls Links: WebsiteEntries & Live Scores, XC Order of GoLive StreamEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Wiesbaden ERM Links: Website, Order of Go, Live Scores, Live Stream

U.S. Weekend Preview:

GMHA June H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

GVRDC Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Waredaca H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Poplar Place June H.T. [Website] [Entry Status]

IEA H.T. & Classic 3DE [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Colorado Horse Park CCI/CIC & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

Panizzon Sets New Record at Tatts 2017

Vet tech creates high-tech horse scanning table

USEA Classic Series Kicks Off at Indiana Eventing Association Horse Trials

Hunter Princess Completes First Event, Places Only Almost Last

Max Corcoran: Fuel Your Horse for Competition

Saturday Video:

Check out this gorgeous ariel footage of the Tattersalls grounds and cross-country course. Yep, I want to go to there:

Rescue Horse Missy Elliot Works It in New Career as Eventer

Heather Thomas riding Missy Elliot. Photo courtesy of Heather Thomas.

Some horses and riders just seem meant to be. As a case in point, take Heather Thomas, the Executive Director of both the Alachua County Humane Society and Gainesville Pet Rescue, and “Missy Elliot,” a horse who made her way into upper-level event rider Jeanie Clarke‘s barn in an unconventional way.

It all started when Jeanie’s friend Joanna Breeden Carr told her about a nice mare she should look at. But the mare wasn’t at another rider’s barn, nor was she at a breeding farm overseas. She was in the Marion County Sheriff’s Department holding field.

Joanna is an animal control officer in the Ocala, Florida area and the horse had been picked up as a stray, having been abandoned in a vacant lot. The Sheriff’s department was holding her for the prescribed amount of time before she could be auctioned off to the public. Joanna wanted Jeanie to come take a look at the mare prior to the auction because there was “something special about her.”

Skeptical, Jeanie had initially resisted. “I said ‘no way — that’s the last thing I need,’” she recounted, but eventually gave in to her friend’s pleading and went along to go see the horse.

They weren’t allowed to enter the Sheriff Department’s field, so Jeanie had to judge the horse by what she could see: a pretty 17-hand bay in good weight with an athletic type, but a quarter crack that was making her lame. Jeanie wasn’t too concerned with that — her husband Scott is a farrier — and returned from the excursion agreeing with her friend; there was indeed something special about that mare.

Missy Elliot upon arrival at Jeanie’s farm. Photo by courtesy of Katie Ruppel.

A few days later Jeanie, Joanna and fellow eventer Katie Ruppel, who is Jeanie’s good friend and neighbor, showed up at the auction (which was “more like five people standing around in a field buying animals with their spare change,” according to Katie) to bid on the mare. The mare’s pasture mates, a nice-looking black Quarter Horse colt and a Nubian goat, out-sold her at $40 and $65 respectively. Jeanie was the only one to bid on the mare and could have paid $0.25, but felt bad offering mere coins and bid $1 instead.  

The auction took place the day after Super Bowl XLIX when the halftime show featured Katy Perry along with a surprise appearance by rapper Missy Elliot, who was making a come back on the music scene after battling illness for several years. With the memorable performance fresh in her mind, Jeanie christened the mare after the self-assured, dynamic rapper. It would turn out to be a fitting name as fate would have it.

Around that same time, Katie and Jeanie had noticed various upper-level riders were posting announcements on Facebook about the assortment of prestigious and promising rides they had acquired. Making light of their unusual situation, Katie posted her own tongue-in-cheek ‘press release’ for Jeanie complete with masterful usage of song lyrics:  

Courtesy of Katie Ruppel.

Once Jeanie took Missy home to her farm and had her shod, she incorporated the mare into her lesson and working student program. She got back into shape fairly quickly for a horse who hadn’t been ridden much in the recent past and a few months later Jeanie and a working student took the mare to her first schooling show at Longwood Farm.

It was a big venue with lots to look at and no one was sure how the horse with a mysterious background would handle the distracting atmosphere. But Missy Elliott marched through the in-gate as if she owned the place and threw down a lovely round even nailing her lead changes. Just as Missy Elliot the rapper made a comeback on the Super Bowl Halftime stage, Missy Elliot the horse was ready to make a comeback in the show ring.

After that first show outing, it was clear that the mare knew a thing or two. Jeanie guessed that she had shown as a hunter and had perhaps even been exposed to eventing at some point as well, judging by the way the mare tackled a coffin complex without hesitation her first time out cross country schooling.

Missy Elliot was put on the market come winter and despite an interested buyer, she didn’t pass her pre-purchase vet exam and the sale fell through. Though her radiographs were riddled with bone chips and arthritis, the mare remained sound and Jeanie put her back into her lesson program. As fate would have it, it was all for the best because the perfect person for Missy happened to already be in Jeanie’s program.

Heather Thomas rode hunter/jumpers growing up before taking 10 years off from horses to focus on her education and career. By day, Heather is working towards a goal of making Alachua County a no-kill community as she runs two local rescue groups which have recently come together to broaden their reach and provide better opportunities for dogs and cats in need in the Alachua County area. In her free time, her passion is riding and competing and with her career in place, she was ready to jump back into to the equestrian world, this time in a different discipline.

“It was pretty easy to fall in love with the friendly, inviting eventing community in Ocala,” Heather said.

Heather has been riding with Jeanie for a year now, having come to her with a young OTTB that she was having trouble working with due to a non-horse related back injury. “He was an exceptionally talented young horse but I was in over my head and looking for the right horse to keep me comfortable, safe and confident in the saddle,” said Heather. “As an adult re-rider who can be a bit timid, I couldn’t ask for a better coach or mentor than Jeanie to help me along the road to building my confidence and improving my riding.”

Jeanie wisely paired Heather with Missy Elliot, seeing something in both horse and rider that would complement one another and help Heather build confidence. “I think both Heather and Missy are really smart,  business-like, and serious about their jobs. They respect each other,” said Jeanie. “And Missy Elliot is not warm and fuzzy — she’s definitely an independent horse, but she likes having a person who dotes on her.”

“Missy isn’t the easiest horse to ride, but Heather is serious about her riding and about the complexities of it,” said Jeanie. “The horse is well-schooled enough that she’s interesting, but still has a little bit of the school horse mentality enough to reassure Heather and say, ‘Mom, we’ve got this!’”

“Jeanie knew Missy Elliott would be the perfect fit for me and she couldn’t have been more right,” Heather said. “She genuinely loves having a job and has carefully taken care of me as I learn the sport.”

This January, Heather and Missy left the start box together in USEA competition both for the first time. You wouldn’t be able to tell from their score that it was their maiden voyage, finishing in fourth place after adding one rail to their sub-30 dressage score in Beginner Novice. The deal was sealed on their partnership and Jeanie decided to gift the mare to Heather. Heather has now piloted Missy Elliott to two additional fourth place finishes and, most recently, a win in the Beginner Novice at the Rocking Horse Spring H.T.

Heather and Missy after their win. Photo courtesy of Jeanie Clarke.

“Being able to compete with Missy Elliott, a rescued horse, is a perfect combination of my work and my passion, ensuring that our community is working to end needless euthanasia,” said Heather. “Jeanie has a heart of gold for taking a chance and rescuing Missy and she has extended that generosity to me. I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity.”

“Sometimes it feels like nice people work and work and still don’t get what they want or deserve,” said Jeanie, “but this is working out nicely.”

Saturday Links from Tipperary

The Maryland Eventing Team was treated to a course walk at the Virginia Horse Trials by none other than Lauren Kieffer as they tackle the Intercollegiate Eventing Championships. Photo Via Maryland Eventing Team at UMD on Facebook.

There’s so much eventing madness going on this weekend, it’s truly insane! While I won’t be at a USEA event this weekend, I’ll be trucking my pony to the annual Groton House Farm 2-phase. I always look forward to this competition; not only is it a well-run show on beautiful grounds, but it’s a great way to test the skills I’ve been working on all winter and see how they fare in the ring.

International Events Going On:

[Saumur Live Scoring]

[Houghton Hall Live Scoring]

U.S. Weekend Action:

Mystic Valley Hunt Club H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Virginia CCI/CIC & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Flora Lea Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Paradise Farm H.T. [Website]  [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Willow Draw Charity H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

The Spring Event at Woodside H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Equestrians Institute H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

May-Daze at the Park H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Coconino Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

Trophy Tales: A History of U.S. Eventing Awards – Mare of the Year

COTH Horse Show Dad: Why They Ride

Use of resistance bands in horse training improve dynamic stability at trot 

Update regarding Emily Gilruth following her fall at Badminton Horse Trials

BLM Budget Cuts Put Wild Horses at Risk, Advocates Say

Saturday Video:

This isn’t your average horse trials! Here’s just a taste of the school spirit that’s encompassing the Virginia Horse Trails this weekend during the Intercollegiate Eventing Championships:

Grindstone Mountain Farm Keeps Former King Oak Farm H.T. Tradition Alive

Stephanie Hancock riding Henry, winners of the Open Training A division. Photo by Cindy Arendt.

Welcome to the eventing calendar, Grindstone Mountain Farm! The Southampton, Mass., property itself is a familiar one as a longtime host of horse trials, but its first running of a USEA event under new ownership as Grindstone took place May 13-14.

Formerly King Oak Farm, the property changed hands in August of last year when longtime owners Fran and Tom Cross made a permanent move to Ocala, Fla. The sale came as a surprise to many, as Fran, Tom and King Oak have been a fixture of Area I eventing for decades.

While a prolonged sale process forced the cancellation of last year’s fall event, area eventers were delighted to hear that new owners Adria Pandolfini and Erik Loiko planned to host the spring horse trials as scheduled and keep the horse trials running into the future.

Coming from the hunter/jumper world, the Adria and Erik were in for a crash course in event organizing over the fall and winter. One of the first people who reached out to them after the sale of the farm was Sharyn Antico, event secretary and organizer for Millbrook Horse Trials, whom the Pandolfini and Loiko family had met years ago while managing a jumper show. Sharyn acted as co-organizer for Grindstone Mountain alongside Adria and Erik this spring. 

Janet Kenton-Walker riding Carmella. Photo by Cindy Arendt.

“Sharyn did an amazing job holding our hand while also embracing some of the changes we wanted to make,” Adria says.

Adria and Erik were also glad to have the help of course designer Tremaine Cooper and course builder Chris Melanisi. “Chris knows our property better than anyone and was able to use Tremaine’s layout to build what some said were some of the best courses on this property,” Adria says.

“We had a great support system in Area 1, including our Westfield State University Equestrian Team members and our families. Many drove hours to volunteer and show support,” Adria says. “We tried to set ourselves up with a team that knew the property well and knew the area’s eventing community.”

The family is excited for the future of their new farm and plan to make some changes to the cross country and stadium courses as well as to the property in general. “All of which will take time,” Adria says. “So the fall event will not be much different. Much will depend on the weather and how fast we can work, but we certainly have plans.”

Diane Thompson riding Boston Jack. Photo by Cindy Arendt.

Grindstone Mountain Farm H.T. was one of, if not the first, Area 1 event to utilize the new resource EventingVolunteers.com which allows organizers to easily manage and convey which volunteer positions need coverage for the weekend.

“It was definitely user friendly for volunteers and coordinators,” Adria says. “Being green at eventing, it certainly made our lives much easier as it organized each day for us and helped us see what we needed and when.”

Erin Renfroe riding Porter Creek. Photo by Cindy Arendt.

One-hundred fifty competitors from Beginner Novice to Prelim left the start box at the newly christened event over its inaugural weekend and despite a less than ideal weather forecast the event went smoothly. Adria and Erik are happy with how their very first horse trials ran, and Area 1 eventers are equally grateful to continue to gallop across the fields of a most beloved farm.

Special thanks to Cindy Arendt, who was on hand to catch the Training A division action, for sharing her photos!

Saturday Links from Tipperary

Mother, daughter, and horses take a water beak during XC schooling. Photo via Anna Freskgard on Instagram (@afreskgard)

Remember the intrepid little Swedish eventers Edwina and Tusseman? Well, Edwina has a new ride on Fabian, an 18-year-old Shetland Pony being leased to her. The adorable little chestnut has competed up to P70 (Pony, 70 cm jump height) in recognized competition and will be teaching Edwina the ropes of eventing. You might be wondering what happened to Tusseman… Don’t worry – one of Edwina’s neighborhood friends is riding him and the two are taking lessons together. We can’t wait to follow along with their adventures!

U.S. Weekend Action:

Hitching Post Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Results]

Kent School Spring H.T. [Website] [Ride Times]

Fair Hill May H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Chattahoochee Hills H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Otter Creek Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

CCC Spring Gulch H.T. [Website] [Ride Times]

Saturday Links:

Jennifer McFall: Smashing the Self-Doubt

Eventing: More than a Sport

2017 Preakness Stakes: Field Preview & Poll

Prizes and Free Entries to Claim at the USEA Intercollegiate Championships Next Week

Max Corcoran: How to Ice Your Horse After Cross Country

From Sterilization to Stitches: Handling Horse Wounds

10 Tips for Better Dressage Trot Lengthenings

ICYMI: Finding Volunteers: The Most Formidable Obstacle on Course

Saturday Video:

Relive some of the action from Jersey Fresh International (including cross country in the POURING rain) in this great recap video:

Saturday Links from Tipperary

My girls! Photo by Abby Powell.

Once a year I get to have all my animals in the same place and it’s pretty cool to have my whole herd together, if a bit of a circus. I’ve got my event pony, a miniature horse, a goat, and a dog. The dog is with me pretty constantly (except for at work) and my event pony is boarded. The mini horse and goat live at my parent’s house in the neighboring town, but I load ’em up in the trailer once every spring for an annual trek over to the boarding barn so that I can avoid paying an extra farm call for their shots and the mini’s teeth floating. I’m just a regular dog, pony, and goat show.

International Weekend Action:

The Event Rider Masters 2017 [Event Rider Masters Live Stream] [Ride Times & Live Scoring]

U.S. Weekend Action:

Jersey Fresh International Three-day Event [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Spokane Sport Horse Farm 2nd Annual Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

Texas Rose Horse Park Summer H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Galway Downs Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Winona Horse Trials  [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Plantation Field May Horse Trials [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Woodland Stallion Station H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

WindRidge Farm Horse Trials [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Grindstone Mountain Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

Casting Stones: We Are Our Own Worst Critics

Here’s to the Barn Moms

Event Rider Masters kicks off at the 2017 series Chatsworth International Horse Trials

It Takes a Team to be on Top of Dressage at Jersey Fresh International

British Eventing introduces Regional Volunteer of the Year Awards

Eventer forced to abandon round after Freejump stirrup breaks

Healthful Horse Barns

Saturday Video:

Thanks to EN’s good David “The Horsepesterer” Frechette for this video of CIC3* leaders Marilyn Little & RF Scandalous’ dressage test:

Wednesday News & Notes from SmartPak

Photo via Will Faudree Eventing on Facebook.

The happiest thing in my Facebook News Feed at the moment might be all the adorable baby pictures! Not human babies – baby horses, of course. They’re way cuter if you ask me. Big congratulations are in order for Will Faudree, Jennifer Mosing, and family, who welcomed a filly out of Will’s former competition partner, Andromaque (“Missie”) over the weekend!

U.S. Weekend Preview:

Jersey Fresh International Three-day Event [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]
Spokane Sport Horse Farm 2nd Annual Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]
Texas Rose Horse Park Summer H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]
Galway Downs Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]
Winona Horse Trials  [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]
Plantation Field May Horse Trials [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]
Woodland Stallion Station H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]
WindRidge Farm Horse Trials [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]
Grindstone Mountain Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Your Wednesday News & Notes:

Shanghai Joe remains under veterinary care and is resting comfortably as his team awaits for swelling to subside before assessing the extent of the horse’s injuries. “Nugget” galloped back to stabling after Shane Rose fell during Badminton cross country and injured a forelimb when he slipped on a gravel path. EN sends best wishes for a speedy recovery. [Shane Rose Eventing on Facebook]

Talent and heart aren’t always readily apparent. When Matt Brown purchased the austere gelding Fernhill Flaxen – now known as Super Socks BCF – he had no idea he would be his horse of a lifetime. [What’s in a Name?]

Haven’t we all gotten hooked on this sport because we love jumping? I’d venture to say it’s likely. But we certainly all haven’t found our way from riding reining horses to training with Bunnie Sexton. [From Sliding Stops to the Start Box, South Dakota Native Takes Up the Reins on A New Discipline]

SmartPak Product of the Day: My very favorite tool in my grooming tote right now are my HandsOn Gloves for Grooming. I particularly love them because they allow me to have so much more dexterity than a regular rubber curry; I can use the tiny nubs on the fingers to gently curry out the nooks and crannies of my pony’s lower legs and use the larger dimples on the palm to massage into her haunches. And since there’s one for each hand they make currytime twice as efficient! [Smartpak]

Friends of UNH XC Looks for Support as Area I Season Kicks Off

UNH in years past. Photo via Friends of UNH XC on Facebook.

While much of the eventing community cast their gaze towards Lexington, Kentucky, for Rolex, competitors in the Northeast flocked to Durham, New Hampshire, for the first sanctioned Area I event of the year. The University of New Hampshire (UNH) Horse Trials marks the official beginning of the season and after long New England winters, it’s always a much anticipated event.

In recent years, however, the UNH cross country course, and by extension the horse trials, have been in danger due to budgetary pressure from the University. Additionally, the cross country course has weathered over the years and is in need of a major overhaul. With no money received from the University for upkeep of the course, it relies solely on schooling fees and facility rentals to finance its repairs and renovation.

Event secretary Liz Oertel Johnson and Chair of the Horse Trials Committee Christina Keim enjoy the course. Photo via Friends of UNH XC on Facebook.

In order to preserve one the longest running remaining Area I events, the Friends of UNH XC was founded in early 2016 to help raise money to put towards an overhaul of the cross country course. When last we checked in with the Friends after the fall horse trials last year, they had hosted a successful silent auction over the competition weekend as well as a few fundraising events such as clinics and derby crosses put on by generous individuals and organizations over the summer. At last week’s event there was another silent auction running throughout the event in addition to a raffle for cross country schooling season passes.

The Friends are now one-fifth of their way towards their goal of raising $50,000 towards renovating the course. “We have a long way to go, but if everyone gave something, we would be there,” said Rachel Greene-Lowell, one of the Friends co-chairs.

Photo by Abby Powell

If you want to help preserve the UNH course for generations to come you can make a donation (write ‘Equine Cross Country Fund’ on the designation line) and stay tuned for announcements of upcoming fundraising events.   There is also still time for local stables organize their own clinic or other event to benefit the cause. In particular, the Friends are also looking for businesses and farms to sponsor a jump; with a $1,500 donation a fence on course will have a sign with the business’ or farm’s name on it, plus they will be included in the program and announced over the loudspeaker at the event. The push to secure funding to upgrade and update the course is a push to secure the future of this event in Area I and to preserve the land for the enjoyment of generations of equestrians to come.

As the season up North is just kicking off, now is the time to get involved. Denny Emerson writes, “I hope we can understand that when we talk about the ‘they,’ as in ‘They need to improve Area I events,’ the ‘they’ is really ‘us.’ Help out. Give money. Give support. The choice between having or losing these top events like UNH is ours to make.”

Thanks to Rich Sorensen we can all enjoy a taste of the action at the water complex from the weekend of competition:

Rolex Rookies No More: Holly Jacks-Smither Reflects on Her First Four-Star with More Inspiration

Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

It’s only fitting that Holly Jacks-Smither’s first four-star mount is an off-the-track thoroughbred; OTTBs have been a way of life for Holly since a young age. She started breaking and galloping young horses for a trainer when she was 12 years old, met her husband Bruce Smither while galloping racehorses on the side, and now she’s brought one all the way from four-year-old to four-star.

Holly has known More Inspiration (Inspired Prospect X Gentle Buck) since he was a two-year-old on the track. When “Morris” retired from racing as a 4-year-old his trainer contracted Holly to restart him and help sell him. While they couldn’t find a buyer for Morris, Holly took a liking to the bay gelding while working with him and wanted to buy him herself, but couldn’t afford to at the time. Her grandfather ended up purchasing him for her for $2,000.

Though he hasn’t been the easiest horse to bring along, Morris has always been a promising talent with an enthusiastic personality. “I’ve never been bucked off a horse more than him,” Holly said. “Not maliciously — he’s just fresh. He leaps, cracks his back and squeals. He’s a pretty happy horse, and I like having a happy horse!”

Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

While flatwork was never Morris’ strength, he was a very talented jumper. Due to his careful jumping style, more than one person has encouraged Holly to sell him as a pure show jumper. While bringing him up through the levels, Holly began to suspect he had upper-level potential and never gave up on him as an eventer despite the naysayers. Though they’ve had mixed results throughout their history, particularly at the two-star level, Holly stuck with him and they made their three-star debut together in early 2015.

That same year, the pair finished 12th at Jersey Fresh thereby qualifying for the Canadian Olympic team and a few months later Equestrian Canada extended a last-minute invite to Holly to compete for Canada at the FEI Nation’s Cup in Aachen. The short notice meant that she had to finance the trip herself, but Holly knew it was an experience she couldn’t pass up. Holly and Morris both came back to North America with a newfound confidence after having completed the toughest test of their careers thus far. “He’s really stepped up to the plate after the international experience,” Holly said of her mount.

With her first overseas competition under her belt, Holly declared her intentions to be considered for the Canadian Olympic team and structured her winter and early 2016 training and competition schedule around trying to achieve that goal. Back in the States, Holly and Morris rode their high from Aachen to finish fourth in the CIC3* Plantation Field at Plantation Field a month later.

Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration at Aachen. Photo by Jenni Autry.

We actually saw Holly and Morris initially on the Rolex entry list last year, but the pair withdrew about a week ahead of time opting to route to Jersey Fresh CCI*** instead. “I didn’t want to go to Rolex just for the sake of going to go to Rolex or completing a four-star when the real goal was the Olympics,” said Holly, “and of course the team coach has a lot of say in what we do.”

Unfortunately, Holly took a spill in the main arena portion of the cross country course at Jersey Fresh. She and Morris were able to bounce back and finish 12th at the Bromont CCI*** a month later, but ultimately the pair was not selected to represent Canada in Rio.

Despite the initial disappointment, Holly didn’t let not making the team get her down for too long. She relished spending the remainder of the summer with her students in Ontario and over the winter she and Morris prepped to come back strong by training with Buck Davidson in Ocala.

They placed in the top five in the Advanced divisions at Richland Park and Plantation Field last year. Early this season they claimed top ten finishes in Advanced at Pine Top, Red Hills, and Chattahoochee Hill. This year on their way back to Ontario from Ocala, Holly decided they were ready to make a quick stop in Kentucky.

Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

Out of all the phases, Holly was most nervous for the first one. “Once dressage was done, I was like ‘OK, I can do this,’” she said. “For our first four-star test, I wanted it under 60 and we did that.”

Though the course was imposing, Holly was confident in her and Morris’ partnership and preparation as she looked ahead to cross country. “We’ve answered every question at some point in our career, just not all together,” she said, but she wasn’t expecting to run into an equipment issue that she’s never dealt with before.

After slipping her reins over the A element of the question at the first water complex, the Frog Pond, they slid through her fingers when she tried to gather them back up on her way to the B element. Without enough contact, Holly wasn’t able to guide Morris over the rest of the combination and the pair picked up penalties for crossing their tracks as they rerouted over the option.

Holly still had trouble gripping her reins throughout the Head of the Lake, but navigated it without issue and while galloping away was able to take off her gloves and stick them in her pocket, hoping bare hands would be better able to grip the reins, but it didn’t help. Holly guesses that she had somehow gotten grease on them.

Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration into the Head of the Lake. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

“If Morris was a strong horse we would have had to pull up. Thankfully he’s not so I figured as long as I could get enough contact to guide him and point him in the right direct we could keep going.”

“You kick yourself now for taking the option because you want to be competitive, but it’s our first four-star and he’s amazing and I didn’t want to make him do something he couldn’t do,” Holly said. “He came home sound and happy and this horse owes me nothing. He carried me around — I didn’t help him.”

Morris’ careful jumping came in handy in the final phase on a day when rails were falling left and right, keeping all of them in the cups but one and just barely not staying inside the time. Holly was thrilled with her horse, particularly after having tackled their longest cross country course to date the day before.

“I’ve never felt him get tired before, but when we got the final water I felt him start to fade a little. The fact that he came back the next day and performed so well and was all business was just amazing. It was definitely a confidence building weekend.”

Holly Jacks-Smither and More Inspiration. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

“I think he just gets better and better. Flat work will always be a bit of a struggle, but I’m excited for the future. He’ll be right up there with the top horses with a little more experience.”

When asked what’s next for her and Morris, Holly says she’s going to defer to Coach Buck Davidson, who was an invaluable mentor to have in her corner over the winter and throughout Rolex. “I can’t say enough good things about Buck,” said Holly. “He has a lot of faith in Morris and it was really good to work with someone who loves my horse as much as me.”

After a confidence building weekend, we’re sure to see more of Holly and More Inspiration. Even without the Olympics on their resume thus far we find Holly’s tenacity, faith in her horse, and their journey from track to four-star, well, inspiring.

Holly Jacks Smither and More Inspiration. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Saturday Links from Tipperary

Lean back! Photo via Ingrid Klimke on Facebook.

If I were standing next to a drop higher than my head, expecting to ride it the next day, I don’t think I’d be smiling; but then again, I’m not Ingrid Klimke. To put it further into perspective (as if you need more proof of how big these fences are) she’s 5’8″ – that’s a pretty average human height (and 2″ taller than myself I might add). I think I’ll stick to Beginner Novice for the time being, thank you very much, but you can bet I’ll be glued to the Badminton live stream today! Watch live here.

Rides times for the North American contingent:

  • Lauren Kieffer and Landmark’s Monte Carlo: 11:30 a.m. BST/6:30 a.m. EST
  • Hannah Sue Burnett and Harbour Pilot: 12:06 p.m. BST/7 a.m. EST
  • Katherine Coleman and Longwood: 1:26 p.m. BST/8:26 a.m. EST
  • Lynn Symansky and Donner: 1:58 p.m. BST/8:58 a.m. EST
  • Elisa Wallace and Simply Priceless: 2:30 p.m. BST/9:30 a.m. EST
  • Kathryn Robinson and Let It Bee: 2:46 p.m. BST/9:46 a.m. EST
  • Lauren Kieffer and Veronica: 4:22 p.m. BST/11:22 a.m. EST

#MMBHT Links: Website, Entries, Order of Go, Schedule, Live Scores, Course Preview, EN’s Coverage, Watch Live, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Preview:

MCTA H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Results]

Heart of the Carolinas 3DE & H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Poplar Place H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Penny Oaks H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

The Event at Skyline H.T. [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

Badminton Horse Trials: Riders’ Superstitions and Secret weapons

Tracy Bowman and Jolie Wentworth of Kismet Farms Announce New Facility

Rolex Kentucky Proves Amazing Event for Black Country Saddles Team

‘It’s Bizarre’: New Dressage Test Divides Opinion at Badminton

Introducing Liverpools to Your Young Event Horse with Sharon White

Tricks of the Trade With Caroline Martin’s Groom Sally Robertson

USEF Eventing Show Jumping Course Advisor Program

Saturday Video:

How did Elisa Wallace and Simply Priceless settle into the Badminton grounds prior to their dressage test? Plus a Badminton history lesson:

Monday News and Notes from Fleeceworks

Fourth place overall and Rolex/USEF National CCI4* Champion Phillip Dutton and Mr. Medicott. Photo via Phillip Dutton Eventing on Facebook.

Well, what a weekend! I don’t know about you, but I’m exhausted (and I actually wasn’t even at the event!) but, man, do I love the excitement of the Best Weekend All Year. We’ve talked a lot about Ze Terminator and Queen Roxy thus far, and for good reason, but let’s take a second here to also appreciate 18-year-old Mr. Medicott. This was the horse’s third competition since he sustained a tendon injury at Rolex 2014, but you’d never know it just judging by the way he ran this weekend! #Legend

#RK3DE Links: Website, ResultsEN’s Coverage,  EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Action:

Fresno County Horse Park HT: [Website] [Results]

University of New Hampshire Spring HT: [Website] [Results]

Loudoun Hunt Pony Club Spring HT: [Website] [Results]

Monday News and Notes:

Four out of the five Rolex Rookies that left the start box on cross country day finished the course and each of them had an assortment of thoughts running through their heads afterward. [You Just Finished Your First Four-Star Cross-Country—How Does It Feel?]

After the final jog yesterday, Jimmy Wofford hosted the premier Champions Live! event featuring Phillip Dutton, Silva Martin, and Melanie Smith Taylor. Each imparted some words of wisdom and experience on attendees.  [Champions Live: Top Takeaways from Experts Phillip Dutton, Jimmy Wofford, Silva Martin and Melanie Smith Taylor]

It’s a big job, but somebody’s gotta do it, and year after year Derek di Grazia has created a challenging and educational cross country course for competitors. Hear what he has to say about creating four-star courses and what he anticipates as he looks ahead to designing for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics. [From RK3DE Champion to Course Designer: Derek di Grazia on Cross-Country]

Monday Video:

Relive the winning moment – I recommend just letting this play on repeat all day to help cure your post-Rolex blues:

Rolex at a Glance: Show Jumping Stats

We’ve just witnessed history, EN, as Michael Jung just became the first person ever to win the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event three times in a row and on the same horse. I’m not even mad he won again — he’s such such a likable guy who so clearly loves his horses. It gives me a good feeling!

Michael just squeaked out the win too, keeping all but one rail up over a course that challenged many to stay quick and straight. As we close out Rolex 2017, lets take one last look at the quick stats.

#RK3DE Links: Website, Final Scores, EN’s Coverage, EN’s Ultimate Guide to Rolex, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

 

And to sum it all up:

Go Eventing.

#RK3DE Links: Website, Schedule, Ride Times, Live Scores, EN’s Coverage, EN’s Ultimate Guide to Rolex, Live Stream, How to Watch Live, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

Rolex 2017 at a Glance: Cross Country Stats

Before we wrap up the weekend with the final phase today, let’s take a look back at some quick stats from yesterday’s cross country at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. Though more riders made the time than in recent year’s past, Derek di Grazia’s technically challenging course saw fewer completions overall.

We’re thankful for an exciting day of sport; though some competitors walked away disappointed, everyone walked away healthy and unscathed. Take a glance at the summary of the results below and catch up on the full report here. The final horse inspection is at 8 a.m. EST.

#RK3DE Links: Website, Schedule, Live Scores, EN’s Coverage, EN’s Ultimate Guide to Rolex, Live Stream, How to Watch Live, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

Keep it locked on EN as we keep you up to date with the exciting conclusion!

Go Eventing.

Rolex 2017 at a Glance: Dressage Gear

Once again we’re taking a closer look at who wore what in the sandbox over the past two days. Though we’re not exactly tracking trends per se, it’s interesting to see that certain gear is more commonly or rarely used. Check out these statistics from dressage!

Go Eventing.

#RK3DE Links: Website, Schedule, Ride Times, Live Scores, Course Preview, EN Tailgate, EN’s Coverage, EN’s Ultimate Guide to Rolex, Live Stream, How to Watch Live, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

Saturday Links from Tipperary

Angie Bartelt and Patrick Madore got engaged while walking the cross country course on Thursday! Congratulations and best wishes to the happy couple! Photo courtesy of Carol Anne Parker.

The best day of the #bestweekendallyear is HERE y’all! If you’re catching the action in person, don’t forget to stop by EN’s 5th Annual Rolex Tailgate at tailgating spaces S240 and S241, near the jog strip and announcer’s tower overlooking the infield to hang with Chinch, enjoy some libations, and win some swag! In addition to food, freebies, and fun, we’ll have #TeamLeeLee stickers available for purchase with proceeds benefitting Lee Lee’s medical and rehabilitation costs.

Don’t forget to set aside a little of that money you’ve slated to spend at the trade fair to bid on some of the incredible items donated to the online auction to support Lee Lee. There is an absolutely stunning number of items to browse though and bid on.

Oh, and I would be remiss not to ask: have you downloaded the EN app yet? If not, seriously, what’s your excuse? It’s beautiful and can send you notifications the second a new post is up, so while you’re out walking around XC you can instantly get EN’s coverage right there on your iPhone or Android! [App for iOS] [App for Android]

Here’s wishing all the competitors safe and speedy rides today!

#RK3DE Links: Website, Schedule, Ride Times, Live Scores, Course Preview, EN TailgateEN’s Coverage, EN’s Ultimate Guide to Rolex, Live Stream, How to Watch Live, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

U.S. Weekend Action:

Fresno County Horse Park HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

University of New Hampshire Spring HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

Loudoun Hunt Pony Club Spring HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

Saturday Links:

Rolex Weekend Guide from EquiRatings

Key Combinations On Course At Rolex Kentucky CCI****

Q&A: Veteran Rolex Three-Day Event Groom Emma Ford

Courtney Cooper: No Sleep Until Cross-Country

Q&A: Allison Springer on Arthur’s Retirement

The Anglo-Arab Sport Horse: Get to Know Lauren Kieffer’s Rolex Mount, Vermiculus

How much pressure is involved in designing Badminton’s famous cross-country course?

Help Eventer Jess Smart Find a Cure

Saturday Video:

Prep yourself for today’s action with a course preview from the designer himself:

Rolex 2017 at a Glance: Meet the Riders

We already took a closer look at the field of Rolex 2017 horses, now let’s break down the stats on their riders!

Keep it locked on EN for all your Rolex coverage! We’ll keep bringing you fun facts and lots more throughout the weekend. Is there a stat you’d like to see in a future edition of Rolex at a Glance? Let us know in the comments!

Go Eventing.

#RK3DE Links: Website, Schedule, Ride Times, Live Scores, EN’s Coverage, EN’s Ultimate Guide to Rolex, Live Stream, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

Rolex 2017 at a Glance: Meet the Horses

It’s that time again to bring you a more in-depth look at our 2017 Rolex Kentucky competitors. Does riding a bay horse mean you’ll be more likely to compete at Rolex someday? No! Is is still fun to see the stats? Yeah! We’ll start you off today with some quick facts about this year’s equine athletes.

Stay tuned for more throughout the competition!

Go Eventing.

#RK3DE Links: Website, Schedule, Entries, EN’s Coverage, Live Stream, EN’s Twitter, EN’s Instagram

Saturday Links from Tipperary

Dangerous! Photo via Practical Horseman Magazine on Facebook. Dangerous! Photo via Practical Horseman Magazine on Facebook.

I hope everyone in Eventing Nation is ready for a thrilling next few weeks. This is one of the most exciting times of the year, I think. The obvious reason being that the Best Weekend All Year is just a short seven days away at this point (but who’s counting?) Then once it’s over and you’re having full on Rolex withdrawal, don’t worry – Badminton is just around the corner with your next four-star fix! So buckle up, EN, it’s time to go eventing!

U.S. Weekend Action:

Longleaf Pine H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Plantation Field April H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Sporting Days Farm H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

River Glen Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times/Live Scores]

Holly Hill Spring H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Saturday Links:

2017 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event to Premiere “Champions Live!” Event

First-Person Perspectives from the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event Presented by Land Rover

Getting Ready for Rolex: By the Numbers – A Look at Conditioning and Prep-Work

‘Will only date four-star eventers’ — and other online dating profile blunders

What’s Behind Shipping Horses Overseas for Competition?

University of Kentucky Finishes First at FENCE Horse Trials

ICYMI: Allison Springer’s Top Mount Arthur Retires Due to Heart Condition

Saturday Video:

Can Micheal Jung and Fischerrocana FST make it three for three? We’ll find out soon enough! In the meantime, let’s take a look back at their foot-perfect XC run from last year: